2011/12/12

I just happened to have... (Chocolate Persimmon Muffins)

It's like this.  Sometimes, I just buy odd-to-me ingredients in store with no plan in mind.  I may know something about them from browsing the web or reading.  But beyond, that...not a clue.

Now I am sure some people would say the "not a clue" extends beyond the ingredients.  And they are probably correct. 


During one of those random shopping trips, I found myself in possession of six - count them six orange-on-their-way-to-becoming-ripe persimmons.  As noted above, I didn't have a clue. 

They were pretty & they piqued my curiosity. 


I let the persimmons wait the requisite amount of time on the kitchen counter.  These things take time, don't you know?  At which point, I had four cups of pulp and needed something to do with them...


I am sure the sight of me sitting in the middle of the dining room floor with stacks of cookbooks around me, rummaging through the indexes was quite the site - although not an unusual one.... These spurts are probably more frequent than I should admit.



The contenders were narrowed down to a small handful; but let's be honest, there was really no competition.  The chocolate recipe won out.  (Hey - I wanted someone besides me to eat them - in my house, chocolate is a sure way to make sure that happens). 



Of course, this recipe had to be tested a couple of times - in the name of quality control. 

The nutty flavor of the buckwheat lent itself nicely to the bittersweet tones of the chocolate.  The sweetness of the persimmon brought a reprieve to the chocolate flavor - a reprieve that you didn't realize you were looking for, until you found it.  At which point, you wondered why you weren't seeking it out all along.  Funny how that works.



Chocolate Persimmon Muffins
Adapted from Kim Boyce's Good to the Grain

2 cups persimmon pulp
6 Tbs unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar (light or dark or a mixture - depending on your preference)
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup creme fraiche, room temperature (buttermilk or yogurt are also nice)
1 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 cup buckwheat flour (spelt is also good here)
6 Tbs cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
4 oz bar chocolate, chopped (I like using 75% or higher)

Preheat oven to 350F.  Generously grease 12-cup muffin tin.  (You can use liners if desired - I think they make for soggy bottoms, but that's just me).

Sift dry ingredients into a medium bowl.  Set aside. 

Cream together butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Scrape down sides.  Add eggs, one at a time - scraping between each addition.  Add creme fraiche, then persimmon pulp.  Continuing to scrape down sides between additions. 

Add dry mix to wet ingredients - stir just to combine.  Scrape down sides one last time, then stir in chopped chocolate. 

Distribute batter between muffin tins (I fill them until the just come to the top of the well - since these muffins are a little denser, they don't seem to rise too far above the top).  Place filled pan into oven and bake for 30-35 minutes (muffins will have a light spring when they are done and a tester will come out clean).  As soon as you can, remove to a wire rack to cool. 

Cool muffins will keep well stored in an air tight container for 2-3 days. 

5 comments:

  1. Cher, These muffins sound so delicious and I just happen to have some persimmons in my freezer. You can freeze them whole and scoop out the pulp when ready to use or eat them like an ice.

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  2. That's pretty snazzy that you had persimmons on hand. I've never purchased any! These muffins look great.

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  3. I love persimmons, grew up eating kaki [thats how we they're called in japanese] but I've never baked with them. These muffins look delicious :)

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  4. Those look really delicious and I be the Persimmon is a great match! I use persimmon as a go to appetizer when entertaining during the holidays - if you slice then and layer goat cheese between each layer with a little basil, then roll the outside of the persimmon with goat cheese in some walnut, slice into wedges and drizzle balsamic vinegar - very festive and easy!

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  5. These look great, Cher! Thanks for sharing. I'll have to hunt down some persimmons this season and give this a try.

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